September 18, 2023
 min read

How to build a modern marketing data stack for CRM personalization

Team Simon

We’re living in an era where data reigns supreme and marketing has evolved from art to a precise science. For CRM marketers, this means the ability to harness the power of first-party data to unlock insights, build personalized experiences, and ultimately drive revenue growth are all paramount. Snowflake’s 2023 Modern Marketing Data Stack report offers a compelling glimpse into the state of modern marketing. This report, based on a comprehensive analysis of 8,100 Snowflake customers, sheds light on the technologies that marketers are turning to to unify, analyze, and activate data effectively.Within the report, Snowflake identifies ten critical technology categories that serve as the foundation for modern marketing data stacks, which include:

  • Analytics & Data Capture
  • Data Enrichment
  • Customer Data Activation
  • Advertising Platforms
  • Measurement & Activation
  • Integration & Modeling
  • Business Intelligence
  • AI & Machine Learning
  • Privacy Enhancing Technologies

These categories represent the bedrock upon which modern marketing stands. However, the success of a marketing data stack lies not only in identifying these categories but also in selecting the right technologies and solutions within them.

A solid set of customer data is only the beginning.

You can’t personalize experiences, or create audiences using rich contextual data without the right technology in place. You need the right tools to be able to collect and make use of that data in order to bring your CRM personalization strategy to life. In order to deliver on your personalization strategy, your marketing data stack should allow you to accomplish these goals:Connect your customer data across systems and sources: Your data stack must be able to connect to the data within your cloud data warehouse and make it easily accessible to your marketing team. By doing this, you’ll be able to more easily recognize patterns in behavior, create custom segments, and deliver personalized messages without having to work with outside data or IT teams. Manage customer profiles: Unified customer profiles enable you to see a detailed view of user activity, preferences, and interests, so you can engage your customers with highly targeted and personalized touch points. The right tools will offer the ability to resolve customer identities, and track user progress through your customer lifecycle. This will help you optimize your campaigns and adapt your messaging as needed to deliver the best customer experiences. Orchestrate and deliver personalized experiences in real-time: By combining user data, audiences, predictive models, and low-latency integration, marketers are able to create experiences tailored to different customer needs, delivering the right message at the right time in the right channel. Access real-time reporting for quick analysis and segmentation: One of the greatest competitive advantages in any market is being able to react to real-time information as it comes. By responding quickly to changes in customer behavior or interests, you stay at the top of customers’ minds and continue to create valuable brand-to-customer touchpoints that lead them down the lifecycle journey

Technology can be a powerful tool in creating efficient, personalized customer experiences—but only if it’s used correctly.

It’s the features that make or break any tool’s ability to carry your personalization strategy to the finish line and deliver on the parameters outlined in Snowflake’s Modern Marketing Data Stack report.Additionally, it’s always good to think ahead: when building your modern marketing data stack, make sure you invest in tools that can handle digital, email, call center data, or any other channels you may want to build into your CRM personalization strategy, now and in the future.But achieving this level of data fluidity is challenging. Data captured in one channel may be formatted in one way, but may need to look completely different when being sent to another channel. Further complicating things, connecting these channels requires a significant amount of coordination across business groups.Your organization will need to define parameters for data integration, outlining how you plan to handle identification and unification across channels, and which unique identifiers will be used to stitch the data back together.Additionally, you’ll need to consider how granular your data needs to be in order to take action. For example, point-of-sale data may enable you to access every single transaction a user has made, but do you really need that level of granularity for sending targeted email content? Or, do you simply need aggregate information of a user’s typical types of purchases?

The best way to do CRM personalization at scale is by combining a cloud data warehouse (CDW) and a marketer-friendly customer data platform like Simon Data.

Cloud data warehouses (CDWs) are cloud-based databases that store valuable data from nearly every part of the business, including first-party customer data. CDWs were primarily constructed as a business intelligence tool, and access to the data is oftentimes limited to IT, engineering or other technical gatekeepers. Think of your CDW as your dad’s garage. It’s completely chock full of valuable stuff, and a total mess - rendering it completely impossible for anyone who’s not him to find anything. So while CDWs provide a centralized source of customer data, supporting activities like personalization and segmentation requires brands to invest in technologies that integrate directly with a CDW, like Simon Data, to enable marketers to access and use the data within. Connected customer data platforms, like Simon Data, are designed to integrate data from your CDW and other sources to create unified customer profiles that are easily accessible and usable for marketers. As Simon unifies data across digital touchpoints, it provides a more comprehensive view of your customers, making it a great addition to any tech stack. CDPs provide marketers with a centralized source of customer data that can be used to build segments, create targeted campaigns and deliver personalized messages to customers.There’s no one size fits all approach to personalization. Successfully building a modern marketing data stack for personalization depends on your data infrastructure, available technology, as well as your team’s organization and governance, among other things. If you’d like to learn more about how Simon is leading the charge in enabling CRM marketers to access and deploy their data for personalization - request a demo + free trial today.

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